Minister of State for Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Marriyum Aurangzeb, said that anyone on social media involved in baseless and false propaganda against Prime Minister and his family would face prosecution under cyber crime and defamation laws.
The PM’s family was named in the Panama Papers, which comprised of 11.5 million leaked documents, showing how some of the world’s most powerful people hid their money in offshore accounts to evade tax authorities. The Supreme Court of Pakistan completed the hearing of Panama Leaks case in February and reserved its verdict, which it maintained will be announced at a later date.
Marriyum Aurangzeb said while addressing a press conference in Islamabad, “While the Panamagate case was in court, there was a lot being said about it on the media and social media, and no action of any kind was taken against it. However, in the past two weeks while the court has secured its verdict, a propaganda campaign has been carried out on social media, and people have been carrying out this campaign in an effort to influence the court.”
She claimed that PTI continues to create lies to discredit Nawaz Sharif and hurt the members of his family. She also said the status of PM’s daughter, Maryam Nawaz, will be decided by the people of Pakistan. Any baseless defamation propaganda against PM and his family will lead to prosecution under cyber crime law and will not be termed as political victimization.
Just recently, Civil Society filed a petition in Islamabad High Court to shut down Facebook temporarily in Pakistan until the blasphemous content is completely removed. Prime Minister has also directed concerned authorities to take all possible measures to block blasphemous content on social media.
Pakistan National Assembly passed the controversial Cyber Crime Bill in August in 2016 after making various amendments to Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill (PECB) 2015. The bill faced the severe opposition of many parties and organizations. Cyber Crime Law ensures the safety of people on the internet. Unauthorized access to information system and data, electronic forgery, cyber threats, hate speech, pornography, cyber-terrorism, fake identities, cyber-stalking, spamming, spoofing and any illegal activity online will lead to severe punishments under law.